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It's not about whether the removal is logistically possible, it's about whether a court can punish someone for failing to carry out the removal.

Even when the former is actually impossible, a court could still punish for the latter. "Ha ha ha I use technology to cleverly show how futile your orders are" is not the kind of thing you want to say to a court with broad contempt powers.




The court can't punish you for not being able to do the impossible. That's ludicrous. "We have shut down all of our servers, yes. We can't stop people from downloading this, no"


That's because all laws make sense and all people who enforce and judge them are understand this.


Pay damages, then.


Pay damages because someone else uploaded something by accident and you can't fix it? It doesn't work like that.


It only doesn't work like that in the context of safe harbor laws.

If the safe harbor law protection doesn't apply, and the defendant is responsible for the illegal behavior, the defendant can absolutely be held legally liable and pay the legally-appropriate punishment.


Why should you pay the damages for something that's not on your server?


If the "forbidden" action was previous to proceedings and carried out in good faith by unknown parties, it would be very hard to sanction anyone.




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